Employers may have obligations to offer benefits by law - USA

Employers may have obligations to offer benefits by law - USAWe live in a highly technological world. We live in a society where there is immense competition for experts in some domains, and many companies compete with each other in terms of offering benefits. Employee retention is one of the main goals employers have, a task that becomes increasingly difficult.

Depending on the state you live in, there are different laws employers need to abide by. And while employees would like to get more benefits from their employers, this is up to them. Because benefits can be grouped into two categories: benefits all employers are obliged by law to offer and those they choose to offer.

But which of these are their obligations and which are their gift for the employees?

Even though it may sound that for corporations these details are not important, they are essential for start-ups or small businesses that have stepped in. Because they do not have the same financial opportunities as big corporations, they need to plan their spending carefully. So, in the beginning, it may be the case that they will provide the benefits they are required to offer by law. But as these businesses will grow and develop, for sure they will add more to their portfolio of benefits.

So, which are these benefits employers need to provide to their employees?

Unemployment Insurance

One of the benefits that are legally required to be provided by employers to their employees is unemployment insurance. Especially during these tough times when the rate of unemployment is rising due to the global pandemic, unemployment insurance can save you. This is something employers need to offer to employees and assist them in the process of finding another job.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance

We might not have heard a lot about workplace accidents or injuries. But many people are working in factories and in environments where accidents happen. Even though the fault could be both of the employer (because it might not have provided the employees with the protective equipment necessary to prevent workplace injuries) and the employees (lack of sleep and attention can lead to workplace injuries), employers are legally required to give this insurance to their employees.

So, it is helpful to know that when you or your employees have suffered a workplace injury, the workers’ compensation insurance supports you with the resources you need to recover. The recovery process can sometimes be long-term and difficult. So, it is important for workers that are temporarily unavailable due to a workplace injury, to get the financial help they need to sustain their lifestyle until they can return to work.

Contributions to Medicare, Social Security, and FICA

It is important to note that these contributions need to be made both by the employer and the employee. So, employers are legally required to withhold a specific percent from employees’ gross compensation and contribute to Medicare, Social Security, and FICA (Federal Insurance Contributions Act). These contributions come with the psychological security that you, as an employee, save up money for your future and health.

Saving money is a problem many people have nowadays, especially when all countries have been hit by the global pandemic. The third wave has already started, and it is likely more people will go bankrupt or lose their jobs in the future. At the same time, there is this constant pressure and anxiety towards getting infected, so having access to medical services is essential. But as long as you are employed, both you and the employer are legally required to contribute to these services and a percent of your gross compensation will be withheld monthly.

Family and Medical Leave

Even though family and medical leave are legally required to be provided by employers to their employees, there are certain requirements both the employer and the employee need to meet. If you have family and medical leave provided, it means that you can take up to 12 weeks per year of unpaid leave. The reasons might be diverse, but familial emergencies or medical problems are included (hence the name). The benefit is that your job is protected during that time, so you do not have to fear you will lose it.

However, not all employees or employers are eligible for this. Only the companies or businesses that have at least 50 employees within 75 miles are eligible for this. At the same time, only employees who have worked with the actual employer for at least 12 months and 1250 hours.

Health Insurance

Health insurance is so essential during these times. Especially because the hospitals in some states or regions are already full of sick people. To get medical services during these times and not only is very costly in the US. And if you do not have health insurance, you will be required to pay the full costs for the treatment you get, no matter if you are sick or injured.

Health insurance works similarly to your house or car insurance. Because this is one of the legally required benefits to be provided to employees, it helped people spread the costs of paying for health insurance. Of course, every company gets to choose a health insurance plan and, also, how much it will be going to contribute to it. This plan can be previously agreed upon with employees, as they will be required to pay the difference and contribute to it. Employers are not allowed to choose different compensation percent for different employees, as this is discrimination.

The employer must pay for at least 50% of the health insurance plan, so as an employee, you will pay at most half of the cost. Most employers choose to contribute at least 75%, but this is up to each of them.


Considering the fact that a few decades ago there were not required contributions, we need to embrace this change. This is because knowing that you have health insurance, that you contribute to social services and Medicare, or that you can take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave is important. It comes with psychological security and it also opens new doors for employers who want to offer their employees more benefits.

Author Bio: Emily Harrison is one of the most influential editors of a big company in London. She has been working in this company since 2006. Her hobby is reading books and creating paper writing websites and custom essay. But besides that, Emily is fond of sports and music. She is a very positive person.